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Yogi Berra

“If life were perfect, it wouldn’t be.” ~Yogi Berra Every Wednesday morning we have a staff meeting in the basement/school room at Whetstone Boys Ranch.  It’s a rather lengthy and sometimes emotional affair. We address pertinent issues, problem-solve together, seek clarification, and offer suggestions that might shed some light into the dark places of our boys’ […]


No Place Like Home

This September was a month to remember. Three boys graduated from Whetstone within one week of each other, and headed back to their part of the country. Back to their families, their friends, their favorite restaurants, fishing holes and coffee shops.  Sleeping in their own beds, reclining in their favorite comfy chair, and probably catching […]


“Stomach Bug”

The stomach bug is flying around this place right now. (Some of it real; some of it the latest incarnation of “yellow bus fever.”) In any case, I take some of the blame. I was the first to get bit. You’re welcome, Whetstone. I did my best to not spread it around, but germs have […]


“All Things New”

A log cabin is rich with symbolism in these here United States of America. It conjures up Little House on the Prairie and Walden Pond. It gives us pride to know that one of our greatest presidents was born and raised in one – our earliest imaginings built with toy logs bearing his name. It […]


You Gotta Serve Somebody

Today’s wisdom says that we should question everything. Question:  “Does that include questioning the idea that we should question everything?” Yes?  No?  Can’t really make sense of that one if you think about it too much can you? Problem is, “question most things” doesn’t have the same ring.  Neither does, “Obey your parents in the Lord, […]


Lighting a Fire

“Filling a bucket.”  That’s how Axel and I refer to school mornings at Whetstone Boys Ranch.  We make sure they can cross t’s and dot i’s, understand genus and species, conjugate verbs, find the variable, and stay within the lines.  It is accomplished because there are some things that just need accomplishing. But the afternoon, that’s […]


Horsey Farm

The summer before we opened up in 2011, we spent a good deal of time raising money. (That’s a funny phrase isn’t it?  Like money grows in a vegetable garden, or can be harvested like catfish in a stock pond.) I remember one event in particular.  It was hot.  We arrived early to set up […]


Question Marks

For the young men at Whetstone Boys Ranch, the future is a big question mark.  Literally.  It’s a huge black line that twists, turns, and then drops off into a dark abyss. ? Their parents and teachers are at a similar impass – and like that giant question mark above, they are at the end […]


Growing Pains

I can remember having terrible pains in my legs when I was 10 years old.  These pains would come mostly at night as I lay in bed, forcing me to review my day for some clue as to why they hurt so much.  I would connect the pain to a game of basketball, dropping from […]


“Against the Wind”

The following is a journal entry inspired by Bob Seger’s song, “Against the Wind.” “There are a lot of odds up against me right now.  But I believe there are more odds for me.  I would say that the majority of the kids who go through a program end up going right back down the […]

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